Amy Gahran has a great post inspired by Scott Rosenberg pointing out that news organizations and journalists may be overrelying on Facebook, even giving up ownership of valued real estate and content. Honestly, I've never read a better argument for our Knight-funded open source platform, NewsCloud.
Says Rosenberg, "By moving so much of the conversation away from their own websites and out to Facebook, media companies are basically saying, ‘We did a lousy job of engaging readers under our own roof, so we’re going to encourage it to happen on someone else’s turf.’”
Says Gahran, "I do think news orgs should have a strong presence in the social media that are popular with their communities. But don’t make this an excuse to slack off on adapting your own tools, culture, and systems to engage more effectively on your own digital 'turf.'"
She continues: "The architecture of Facebook is also still mostly a 'walled garden'—much of the content and interaction is not easily or universally findable or linkable. This is appropriate for interpersonal social networking, but it makes less sense from a publisher’s perspective. It can make valuable content associated with your brand harder to find, track, and keep."
What NewsCloud Provides
What NewsCloud provides is an open source suite of tools for hosting interactive features simultaneously on Facebook applications and as Facebook Connect Websites (learn more about these). News organizations can leverage Facebook authentication and identity while essentially extending their own websites with NewsCloud and maintain complete ownership. They can even plug in their own advertising engine, statistical tracking and index the content with search engines.
If a reporter wants to gather ideas from readers, they can use our idea board. If they want to add a fun predictions game to a sports topic, they can use our predictions feature. If they want to collect crowdsourced links related to a particular story or topic, they can use our directory feature. These are just a few examples.
We've been shocked that news organizations are turning over their comment engines to proprietary Facebook plugins, giving ownership control and the advantages of open search to Facebook. NewsCloud is the kind of solution that provides integration with social media while maintaining openness and control.
NewsCloud allows news organizations to dramatically upgrade their websites with interactive social media connected features at very low cost.
Ready to learn more? Start with our community guide to the platform